UFH hosts National Student Development Professionals' Annual Summit

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This past weekend, 18-21 May, the University of Fort Hare (UFH) had the honour of hosting the National Association of Student Development Professionals (NASDEV) Best Practice Summit.

NASDEV is a body for Student Services and Development Practice in the Post School Education and Training (PSET) sector. The annual summit is aimed at shaping the capacity and capabilities of the members of this emerging professional practice by creating a platform for self-introspection and developing innovative pathways for this practice to be as proactive as possible.

The hosting of the event comes a few months after UFH Dean of Student Affairs, Mr Lufuno Tshikhudo was voted the “Most Visible, Relevant and Coolest” Student Affairs professional in the country by members of the South African Association of Senior Student Affairs Professionals in December 2022.

More than 80 delegates convened at the Miriam Makeba Arts Centre on the East London Campus, to present papers and hold deliberations under the theme: “Forging Pathways in Student Affairs for Reflection, Restoration for the Future.”

The four-day summit proceeding included paper presentations, panel presentations, and dialogue sessions that carried various sub-themes that are in line with advancing social cohesion and transformation in Higher Education.

Welcoming the delegates, UFH Vice-Chancellor, Prof Sakhela Buhlungu commended NASDEV for having paper presentations, saying: “It is an excellent idea that will ensure that the best practice set of papers presented at the summit are shared across the sector.”

The guests were also welcomed by NASDEV President Dr Bernard Sebake who, in conjunction with Dean Tshikhudo officially opened the summit.

Some of the papers and deliberations were held under the following titles:

  • Creating Pathways for Social Cohesion in Higher Education: The role of Student Affairs SAASSAP Representative
  • Promoting Social Cohesion and Social Justice within Higher Education to Advance Good Governance by Mr Buntu Mnyaka- Sol Plaatje University
  • Social Cohesion and Transformation in a Historically Advantaged Institution: A Case of the University of the Free State by Ms Zoleka Dotwana- University of Free State
  • Effective strategies that the Central University of Technology uses to forge social cohesion through student wellness, the role of sport and arts and culture by Ms Blessing Ngo- Central University of Technology
  • The Adoption of Digital Technology in Higher Education with Reference to Student Affairs by Ms Nicole Morris-Sol Plaatje University.